None of us wants to get older, but it is going to happen whether we like it or not. The important thing is that we have long, enjoyable lives, and there are things we can do to insure this happens. However, here are a lot of bad habits people can pick up that will do a lot to shorten their life spans. Luckily, even bad habits can be broken, and the effects can actually be reversed, at least to a certain extent. Here are a few of the things that make us old before our time, and can even shorten our life spans:
Smoking – This is one of the worst things a person can do to their bodies. Smoking not only causes cancer, increases the risk for heart disease and stroke, but it also can go a long way in making a person look older. Many people who are lifelong smokers have skin that is extremely wrinkled, and often, they also have dark circles beneath their eyes. If you are a smoker, you really should try to quit. Once you quit smoking, you have less risk of many health problems, including heart disease and cancer.
Alcohol – It is fine to indulge in a few drinks once in a while, and there are some studies that show individuals who consume alcohol on a modest basis live longer than those who don’t drink at all. In fact, as long as you do not go overboard, it can be kind of therapeutic. But, if you drink to excess, it can definitely shorten your life span, and make you look much older. People who drink heavily often have sallow looking skin, not to mention red, swollen noses. Alcohol can also lead to a number of health problems, including liver issues, gastrointestinal bleeding, and brain impairment.
Inactivity – We all need to have a certain amount of exercise, and the less exercise we get, the less healthy we are. When we don’t get enough exercise, our muscles and joints will not work properly. Many people who do not exercise find that they really pay for it when they are older. Some studies have shown that being a couch potato is a higher risk factor for heart disease than smoking a pack of cigarettes per day. When you exercise regularly, you can expect to have healthy joints and muscles for many years to come plus improved heart and lung function.
Poor Diet – It is really important to try and follow a healthy, balanced diet, at least most of the time. We need to have certain nutrients in order to be healthy, and when we are not eating foods that have these nutrients, our bodies are not getting what they need. On the other hand, being overweight and obesity have reached epidemic levels in this country of over 60% and now effecting up to 30% of children. Because of the excessive weight, for the first time, our younger generation might face a life expectancy that is lower than their parents. Eating healthy and maintaining an ideal body weight can add years to a person’s life, and when you are eating right, you are going to feel a lot better too.
Failure to Get Regular Physical Check Ups – Statistically it has been shown that undergoing screening exams for disorders such as colorectal cancer, breast cancer, and a number of other medical diseases can lead to early detection and treatment with potentially better outcomes. While no one really wants to get any of these diseases, if they do occur, then the earlier they are dealt with, then the better. However, fear as well as lack of access to healthcare can be major reasons that you might face when it comes to being able to deal with these types of ailments in the best way possible.
These are just a few basic health tips that given proper attention can make a major difference in your life. The choices are up to you.